We are open!! Covid-19 lesson rules


SMS Equestrian – re-opening under strict rules – May 2020


Further to guidance for recreational sport and exercise from the sport & recreation alliance and Sport England, we as a BHS riding centre have been advised to re-open, in a fashion. Whether you agree with the decision, or think it's too early, we now have a choice. I sympathise with those of you who will want to wait a few days or even weeks to see the infection numbers come down further before you venture out.
  For those of us who will be taking advantage of the relaxation in the rules it is now up important to ensure that we continue to have no cases of the virus at SMS Equestrian and adhere, at all times, to the new rules:

ü  You can ride on your own.

ü  Current clients only – no new clients

ü  No visitors to the stables

ü  Book via email ( do not go to the yard if you do not have a booking.

ü  Pay online via bacs (Mrs S Mitchell-Sheppard. Acc: 29527600. Sort code: 54-41-19) The money must have cleared before lesson commences

ü  Ensure you are wearing clean clothes

ü  If you arrive early please remain in your car rather than enter the centre early

ü  Do not leave your car until 5 minutes before your lesson time

ü  Ensure gloves are on before exiting your car and keep these on until returning to your car

ü  There will be no access to the toilets, office or stable area

ü  Walk from your car directly to the arena where your horse will be ready for mounting

ü  Please take the horse from your instructor and you may mount

ü  Upon finishing your lesson please dismount and leave the horse for your instructor, then immediately leave the arena and go straight to your car.

(Please view the short video on how we foresee this working)





Our staff are empowered to ensure that these best practices are being followed, so please be understanding and take any requests from them in a positive manner.


We have been advised under the BHS guidelines that only private lessons can be taught, not even members of the same household so we will be following this guidance until further notice with no leeway.

Based on this guidance we are very sorry to say that we cannot offer lessons to any children that need to be led at this time or any children unable to alter their own girths and stirrups


We also regret to inform you that in order to minimise risks we will also not be able to lend our equipment out and this will include helmet hire

We will not be allowing any spectators unless a ‘junior’ is riding and then 1 adult may attend but please be mindful of the 2 metre social distancing rule around the instructor and any staff on the yard.

To summarise, you may ride if:

ü  You can mount without assistance

ü  You can alter your girth and stirrups without assistance

ü  You are prepared to follow the guidelines of entry and exit

ü  You are prepared to ride alone only

ü  You are prepared that lessons will be flat work and pole work only, no jumping or no stirrup work at this time.



Private lesson bookings of 45 minutes will be available on a weekly basis – you will only be able to book one lesson each week to begin with and the lesson timings are non negotiable. The cost of all lessons will be £30.

We will be allowing 15 minutes between lessons to reduce the risk of clients congregating and time to disinfect equipment – please do not think this allows you 15 minute socialising time!



Please cancel your lesson request if you:

  • have need to self-isolate
  • are in a household that is self-isolating
  • are feeling unwell

Our cancellation policy will be reduced to allow up to 24 hours notice to be given without charge, anything closer than this will incur a full lesson charge.


**Please ensure we have up to date emergency contact details including medical information


When able to as directed by Government we hope to be able to offer the following:

  • Semi-private for more experienced riders from within the same family/household group (enabling maximum space between each other)
  • Lunge lessons for more competent riders where able to further ensure social distancing
  • Lead rein lessons where able to further ensure social distancing, for example, following induction and supervision training, the use of a competent family member/household group to lead the pony and employing use of visual demonstration as required
  • Group lessons in accordance with Government guidance

Once again thank you for your understanding and please be patient with us – we will be trying to fit our normal client base into one third of the time we used to have.

Thank you and happy riding x